Bahrain starts major road revamp work

Bahrain authorities have started work on the North Town Entrance Roads Revamp Project (W-Link) being funded by the Kuwaiti Fund for Arab Economic Development (as part of the Gulf Development Programme).

The BD7.69 million ($20.2 million) project, which will cater to 5,000 housing units in the Northern Governorate of the kingdom, was awarded to Al Ghanim International Company and Haj Hassan Group (who will be in charge of implementation).

It is part of the ministry’s plan to provide quality infrastructure services across the kingdom, said Essam bin Abdulla Khalaf, the Minister of Works, Municipalities Affairs & Urban Planning after inaugurating the project.

The event was attended by Ahmed Al Khayyat, the Works Affairs undersecretary and Huda Fakhro, the Roads assistant undersecretary along with the the supervising team of engineers from the ministry, the project consultant and representatives from Haj Hassan Group and Al Ghanim Kuwaiti Company.

The project involves construction of a 1.2-km-long road with four lanes on each direction; connecting Janabiya and Budaiya Interchange to the North Town, he stated.

A 135-m-long bridge will be constructed above the marine channel to provide a smooth traffic flow besides increasing the road capacity.

According to officials, a building belonging to the Ministry of Agriculture will be demolished to make way for the project.

The ministry is presently reviewing the final designs and documents for the project to construct an alternative building, they added.

Also, the ministry has recently commenced work on a 2.2-km-long service road along Salmabad Avenue; leading to Road 1206 in Block 712 at the Northern Governorate.

The project comprises levelling and asphalting works, implementation of a storm water drainage network and ground channels for future use besides construction of pavements, signage and painting ground markings.

The BD309,713 ($814,755) project was awarded to Jahicon Engineering Services.

Source: Trade Arabia

June 13, 2016 / by / in ,
New integrated Property Management platform launched

Bahrain-based Property Management company Impact Estate has launched a new integrated Property Management Platform designed to accommodate all Landlords’ needs, the company said in a statement.

According to the company, the new property management solution allows Managers and Landlords of residential and commercial properties with one touch of a button to take complete control of every aspect of their business, including the rent, vacancy and maintenance cycles.

The move also allows Landlords to see the status of the property including occupancy, rental collection, on-going maintenance tasks and financial reports of income and expenses online or through the mobile application. Moreover, it provides tenants with a hassle-free platform to submit maintenance inquiries, check payment status and access the lease-related documents, the statement added.

Impact Estate said it offers mobile-friendly services allowing access on tablets, phones or desktop computers.  Property Managers, Tenants and Landlords can efficiently interact with each other without leaving their houses and offices.

The company also said it is the first in the region to implement this innovative Property Management Platform designed to create a new convenient communication environment for all parties involved in the property management process including Tenants, Landlords and Property Manager.  Created with customers in focus the new Property Management System in one more step to take the Property Management Services in Bahrain to an advanced international level.

Savio Fernandez, Head of Property Management Department says: “The new service allows us to monitor all transaction as well as to interact with tenants and property owners on line at any time of the day and in any part of the world.   We believe that the new service will allow Impact Estate to create an unprecedented level of customer service in the region.”

June 5, 2016 / by / in ,
Gulf Residence Amwaj officially opens

A new $80-million serviced apartment project on Amwaj Islands in Bahrain has officially opened its doors to receive guests.

Developed by Lona Real Estate, owners of the Amwaj Waves Development, and managed by Gulf Hotels Group, the Gulf Residence Amwaj offers travellers luxury accommodation for both long and short stays.

The new development comprises two luxury four star hotel apartment buildings featuring 173 spacious suites and apartments which include one studio residence, 43 one-bedroom residence, 107 two-bedroom residence and 18 three-bedroom suites, in addition to four luxurious four-bedroom and six-bedroom penthouse suites.  All suites and apartments have been designed in a modern, contemporary style with a focus on quality family living and functionality.

Facilities include an exquisitely landscaped swimming pool deck, fitness centre, Mediterranean restaurant “Waves by the Pool”, cafe, boutique shops & salons, meeting and banquet rooms and ample parking space.

“The Gulf Residence Amwaj is managed by the Gulf Hotels Group and is one of the new projects in line with the group’s expansion strategy of adding hotels and luxury apartments in key locations,” said Gulf Hotels Group chief executive officer and board member, Aqeel Raees. “Gulf Residence Amwaj is one of the latest additions to join the group’s exclusive collection of unique independent properties and will not only offer guests every comfort, but also excellent value for money. The service will mirror the group’s core philosophy of providing five-star services for four-star pricing”

Other facilities include a health club with sauna and steam rooms, children’s pool, Jacuzzi, in addition to a number of food and soft beverage outlets and luxurious commercial area. Concierge service and valet parking is available for the convenience of all guests.

Abdulla Buhindi, chairman of Lona Real Estate, said: “Amwaj Islands is a fantastic location for both long stay and short stay visitors to Bahrain. We are looking forward to the renowned expertise of the Gulf Hotel team to make the Gulf Residence Amwaj a premier family destination on Amwaj Islands.”



May 21, 2016 / by / in ,
Impact Estate’s participation in 2016 Gulf Property Show

 April 2016, Manama, Kingdom of Bahrain: Impact Estate has taken part in the 2016 Gulf Property Show along with their sister company Impact Interiors. Both companies have showcased extremely exceptional products. Impact estate have exhibited two of their exclusive projects, Modern Residence 2, whose completion date is in 30 days and Rayyan Residence whose completion will be the end of July, both located in the heart of Amwaj. As well as these residential projects, Estate will be launching new UK developments located in Manchester, Leeds and Liverpool. These properties range from buy-to-let and student accommodation at very affordable prices.

Additionally Impact Interiors have exhibited ‘Furniche by Interiors’ which was established in 2013 to bring the best quality furniture and fittings to the customers door step. Their Interior design background, combined with their extensive experience in the FF&E procurement sector is the underlying factor that differentiates them from the rest.

The exhibition is taking place at the Bahrain International Exhibition and Convention Centre on April 26th-28th of April.


Oksana A.K., General Manager of Impact Estate says: “We are excited to offer new projects in the best district of Bahrain to our clients. Even though Bahrain is very attractive in terms of property investments, some buyer are looking for real estate outside of the Kingdom. Now, with our new international projects we can cater to a wider specter of clientele.”

May 7, 2016 / by / in ,
Impact Estate represented the real estate industry of Bahrain during the Russian Delegation’s visit

27 April 2016, Manama, Kingdom of Bahrain: Impact Estate were invited to participate in the Russian delegation’s visit to the Kingdom on Bahrain, representing their real estate sector.  The delegation consisted of 50 people, welcomed by H.E. the Governor of the Capital Governorate, Sheikh Hisham A. Rahman Al Khalifa, from 24th to 27th of April 2016 to enhance the cooperation between the two countries in the commercial, economic, scientific, technical and cultural fields.

During Russia’s visit, the governor, Georgy Poltavchenko and the rest of the delegation party had a welcome tour around Bahrain followed by visits to some of Bahrain’s finest new developments.

Additionally, throughout the visit the Russian delegation have had numerous meetings with senior officials discussing ways in which they can boost cooperation and promote investments between the two countries.

“It is an honour for us to be a part of the Capital Governorate’s delegation.  This visit is a great opportunity for us to showcase the real estate projects and developments in Bahrain to Russian investors, banks and companies.  We hope to find partners in Russia interested to invest in the booming property market of Bahrain”, says Oksana A.Konyshevska, General Manager of Impact Estate.

May 7, 2016 / by / in ,
Tilal Properties plans $816m Sharjah projects

Leading developer Tilal Properties is studying proposals for two new projects worth Dh3 billion ($816 million) in Sharjah, UAE, said a report citing a senior official.

A new joint venture between Sharjah Asset Management and Eskan Real Estate Development, the company aims to offer affordable housing to 65,000 residents.

The first-of-its-kind Tilal City mixed-use development includes 1,855 land plots, offering GCC nationals and UAE residents for the first time an opportunity to buy or lease land and develop properties in Sharjah.

The first project would comprise housing units, while the second one will be an industrial city, the company director general Khalifa Al Shaibani was quoted as saying in Mubasher.

He was speaking on the sidelines of the Cityscape Abu Dhabi, the most prominent real estate showcase in the UAE capital.

The company is continuing with its 25 million-sq-m Tilal City project in Sharjah at an investment of around Dh2.4 billion ($653 million), said Al Shaibani, expecting phases one and two to be delivered by December this year and phases three and four by December 2017, stated the report.

Tilal is not currently considering to go public on equity markets, said the official, adding that it awaits the suitable time to take such a step.

He also revealed that his company is studying investment opportunities locally and overseas, especially in the GCC real estate sector with a focus on Saudi Arabia, it added



April 17, 2016 / by / in ,
RMK launches $30m Bahrain residential tower

Bahrain’s RMK Projects, a division of RM Kooheji & Sons, has launched its latest development, a freehold residential tower in Juffair area of the kingdom.

The 26-storey tower offers two-, three-bedroom apartments and two-bedroom duplex apartments with parking spaces and amenities.

The $30-million Nasmah Star is the company’s third project in the Nasmah line of affordable residential projects, said RMK Projects CEO Ishaq Kooheji, at the official launch held today (April 16) at the Crowne Plaza hotel in Manama.

Committed to the vision “where elegance meets affordablity”, the Nasmah line offers affordable housing solutions without compromising on the quality of materials and fittings used,” stated Kooheji.

Located in the heart of Juffair, the property is within walking distance of major supermarkets and the vibrant Juffair ‘food street’, with easy access to major highways. All apartments offer excellent city or sea views, addeed Kooheji.

The tower offers 137 freehold residential units and three parking levels. Residents will benefit from a host of modern recreational amenities such as fully equipped gym, swimming pool, steam room and sauna, and a pool table.

The prices range from BD49,000 to BD60,000 ($129,104 to $158,086).

“We have received a lot of interest from investors, both local and international, which bears positive implications for the kingdom’s real estate landscape. We believe this is the right time to invest. Piling work is complete for Nasmah Star, and the tower is expected to be ready by the second quarter of 2018,” he said.

The apartment units were first offered in this project to the pool of loyal Nasmah clients and potential waiting list in an exclusive pre-launch event, where more than 50 per cent of the available units were sold out, said the company’s senior officials.

Kooheji said the developer had reached an agreement with Khaleeji Commercial Bank for mortgage financing and that more banks are expected to join soon.

According to him, four different apartment configurations are available, all named after celestial bodies in keeping with the “Star” theme.

The two-bedroom apartment units consist of the Pluto and Galaxy with a built up area of 109 sq m and 117 sq m respectively. The two-bedroom 138-sq-m duplex is called the Venus. Starting from the 21st Floor is the Jupiter, the 183-sq-m three-bedroom apartment, he added.



April 17, 2016 / by / in ,
Low oil prices to impact Bahrain growth: NBK

Bahrain’s economic growth is expected to slow in 2016 as real growth in the oil sector receded amid a low oil price environment, a report said.

Growth in real GDP will slow from an estimated 1.6 per cent in 2015 to around 1.1 per cent year-on-year (y/y) in 2016, before recovering slightly in 2017, explained the latest Economic Update from the National Bank of Kuwait (NBK).

Non-oil GDP is expected to decelerate to around 1.4 per cent y/y in 2016 on weaker investor sentiment, before picking up to around 3.2 per cent y/y in 2017 on stronger growth in government spending and official GCC grants targeting housing and infrastructure developments, the report said.

Non-oil growth is expected to receive a healthy boost from investment in the coming years. The GCC has pledged $10 billion in investment over ten years. Indeed, the airport expansion project is being launched with a Dh3.4 billion ($925 million) grant from the UAE. In addition to this, Bahrain’s Economic Development Board (EDB) plans to invest over $20 billion in industrial and infrastructure projects over the coming years.

Nonetheless, the strength of non-oil GDP growth remains vulnerable to some internal concerns, which have dampened business optimism in recent years. While these concerns have mostly subsided, they continue to affect investor sentiment and limit gains in the financial services sector, construction and tourism sectors.

Consumer price inflation expected to edge up on subsidy cuts

Headline inflation accelerated towards the end of 2015 mainly on the back of stronger gains in food inflation, following the cuts in subsidies on meat products in September of 2015.

Despite this, average inflation slowed to 2.3 per cent y/y in 2015 compared to a 2.7 per cent average in 2014; this was primarily due to a moderation in housing inflation in the second half of 2015. “We expect inflation to edge slightly higher to average around 2.5 per cent in 2016 on further subsidy cuts,” said the NBK update.

Budget deficit to remain high on lower oil earnings and high spending

Bahrain is forecast to log in one of the largest budget deficits in the GCC region. “With the breakeven oil price estimated at around $120 per barrel and oil prices remaining low, we expect the budget deficit to widen and come above 17 per cent of GDP in 2016 before narrowing slightly to around 13 per cent of GDP in 2017,” said NBK.

Bahrain has vowed to embark on austerity measures in line with the IMF’s recommendations to help plug its public deficit. Thus far, it has approved a plan to reduce government spending by 30 per cent. Spending cuts have been concentrated on subsidies, while maintaining planned spending on infrastructure and development projects.

In August 2015, the government lifted subsidies on meat products. In December 2015, the cabinet approved a new pricing system for diesel, kerosene and jet fuel that will lower subsidy costs and better reflect price increases in other GCC states. In March 2016, it is scheduled to remove subsidies on utilities.

However, engaging in any further significant cuts in public spending will be a challenge, especially since the two politically sensitive areas of spending, subsidies and public wages make up two-thirds of total government spending. Any major cuts in these two areas could be problematic.

Given that the budget deficit is expected to remain high in spite of recent and potential subsidy cuts, Bahrain will continue to tap into international bond markets in 2016 to help finance its deficit. In 2015, Bahrain raised $1.5 billion in bonds. However, the recent downgrades of Bahrain’s long-term credit rating to BB by S&P and to Ba1 by Moody’s are likely to make issuance more challenging.

Banking sector liquidity set to tighten

Credit growth portrayed a mixed picture in the first half of 2015: whilst personal lending growth remained rather resilient in the face of lower oil prices, growth in business loans appears to have eased.

It is important to note that credit growth data has been distorted and more difficult to interpret ever since the Central Bank of Bahrain reclassified some of its financial institutions in May of 2014.

Business loan growth, relative to the growth in personal loans, was more affected by the central bank’s reclassification. Adjusting for the reclassification (dotted red line on chart 5), business loan growth slowed to 2.5 per cent y/y in June 2015, whilst personal loan growth edged up to 13.8 per cent y/y. However, personal lending growth is also forecast to ease in the near- to medium-term amid new liquidity conditions.

Deposit growth trended lower in 1H15, mainly due to a slowdown in government deposit growth.

After a short-lived recovery in May 2015, government deposit growth slipped back into negative territory in June, declining by 3.4 per cent y/y. Government deposits are being sapped by high levels of fiscal spending and lower oil revenues.

Growth in the broad M2 money supply measure has been gradually trending lower since the end of 2014, on the back of lower oil prices. Recently, this has helped push interbank rates higher. In June 2015, M2 money supply growth came in at 6.5 per cent y/y.

Bahrain’s one-month and three-month interbank rates witnessed steep increases at the end of 2015 and at the start of 2016. Both rates are due to continue to rise in 2016 on the back of slower deposit growth.

Bank asset growth remained lacklustre; total commercial bank asset growth slid deeper into negative territory after declining by 2.1 per cent y/y in June.

Total bank assets were shepherded lower mainly by losses in the wholesale sector. Growth in wholesale bank assets, which make up around 60 per cent of total assets (as of 2014), contracted by almost 4 per cent y/y in June.

Asset growth among the more domestically-focused retail banks has been on a downward trend since the beginning of this year. In June, it slowed from 2.9 per cent y/y in May to 0.5 per cent y/y.



April 13, 2016 / by / in ,
Cayan Group acquires off-plan permits for Samaya project

Cayan Group, a leading property developer in the Middle East, is to launch Samaya, a high-end residential project in the prime area of Erga in northwestern Riyadh, Saudi Arabia.

Spread over 1 million-sq-m, the billion-riyal project is set to become the ultimate residential destination, offering integrated services in Wadi Hanifah, one of the most attractive spots in Riyadh.

Cayan Group has obtained all official permits required to proceed with the project, including the off-plan permit from the Ministry of Commerce and Industry. Further, off-plan residential land plots have been reserved for Cayan’s VIP clients at this initial stage.

Ahmed Alhatti, chairman of Cayan Group said: “Samaya addresses market needs for high-end residential compounds that offer integrated services for the residents of Riyadh.”

“Such prominent developments support the Saudi economy and drive property investment across the kingdom,” he added.

Samaya is a strategic residential suburb that features an impressive location contiguous to lavish residential compounds such as the Diplomatic Quarter, and boasts vital facilities designed to the highest engineering and urban planning standards.

Construction work will commence soon, offering comprehensive infrastructure services including water and electricity connections and other major facilities. Samaya consists of residential and commercial units, schools, nurseries, mosques, sports clubs, parks, green spaces, water fountains, farms, pedestrian paths, jogging and cycling tracks, as well as many other entertainment facilities.

Erga, the homeland of the project, is a one of the most luxurious areas, featuring breathtaking mountains, plains, and amazing parks. Samaya will be developed in Wadi Hanifa, one of the longest open parks in Erga spread over 80 km.



April 12, 2016 / by / in ,
Manara to showcase residential, logistics projects

Bahrain-based Manara Developments Company is set to launch a unique range of its properties at the Gulf Property Show 2016, the boutique showcase for real estate and property developments which opens this month in Bahrain.

The event is being organised by Hilal Conferences and Exhibitions (HCE) under the patronage of HRH Prince Khalifa bin Salman Al Khalifa, the Prime Minister of Bahrain, from April 26 to 28 at the Bahrain International Exhibition and Convention Centre.

On the upcoming show, managing director Dr Hasan Al Bastaki said: “Manara’s participation as a strategic partner in this real estate event, portrays its commitment to the real estate sector, as this exhibition, which achieved a growth of up to 70 per cent from 2013, is an annual opportunity for industry players, as well as prospective owners to meet and address the industry’s latest developments and trends.”

Dr Al Bastaki said Manara will exhibit three major residential projects one of which is a mixed-use development “Hasabi” project offering breathtaking seafront views.

Also at the expo, Manara aims to introduce a new sales phase of its Investment Gateway – Bahrain project that offers opportunities for ownership for Bahraini as well as non-Bahraini companies and individuals, a feature that makes the project, and the kingdom an ideal base for a wide array of light industry and logistical support on both the local and regional level.

Launched two years back, Investment Gateway – Bahrain is a major initiative by the company to encourage and support investments in the kingdom, with a particular focus on foreign investments.

In addition, amongst the projects that will be showcased at the exhibition, include Kenaz Al Bahrain featuring 64 residential units spread over eight four-floor apartment buildings, in addition to Wahati, a subproject of Wahat Al Muharraq that was initially introduced over three phases since 2011, offering a total of 227 villas of various sizes and designs and targeted at middle-income earners.

According to him, the project offers apartments that were specifically designed to meet the requirements of modern Bahraini families while maintaining the common trend towards vertical expansion to address the scarcity of land and thus serving a greater population within the available space and yet meeting the needs and requirements of young Bahraini families.

Dr Al Bastaki said Manara was amongst the first companies to join the partnership with the Ministry of Housing more than two years ago in line with the leadership’s directives towards the national social housing strategy.

Through this partnership, Manara extended its support towards the efforts of the Ministry of Housing in providing appropriately priced housing to suit the modern family’s needs and achieve social stability.



April 12, 2016 / by / in ,